A teenage girl suffered moderate burns Friday after her Apple iPhone unexpectedly exploded in her pocket at a middle school in Kennebunk, Maine.
The eighth-grader’s phone reportedly made a sudden “pop” sound in the middle of class, followed by smoke rising from the girl’s pants. Her teacher and classmates reacted quickly to help the girl, and was later taken to Southern Maine Health Center to receive treatment for her burns.
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The York County Coast Star reports the girl sat down to begin her first class of the day when the iPhone exploded from one of her back pants pockets. Male students left the room while the girl’s teacher and peers helped her get out of the pants and into a blanket. Kennebunk Fire Rescue arrived shortly after.
According to EMS Division Chief Andrew Palmeri, the iPhone’s battery likely shorted out when she sat on it.
“People should obviously use caution when placing their phones in their back pockets so as not to crush them and cause an electrical short,” Palmeria said.
Middle School of the Kennebunks Principal Jeff Rodman contacted the parents via email to explain the situation, which he described as “something that I don’t think people had ever seen before.”
“I commend the students, I commend our staff, and the Kennebunk first responders for their immediate response and for the way it was handled,” Rodman said. “It was just a strange thing. A great response by everybody involved.”
Had it not been for the girl’s and the school’s quick response, the girl’s injuries could have been worse according to first responders. The state fire marshal has opened an investigation into the phone’s explosion.
News.com.au reports having reached out to Apple for comment, to which the company has not responded.
Two separate incidents of Apple devices exploding were reported last year, including an iPad that prompted the evacuation of an Apple Store and an iPhone 5 in China that exploded after a 40-minute phone call.